Page 1

BRIDAL GUIDE Special suppliment to The Valley News & Herald-Journal Copyright 2014



January 2014




They will all love.


>> >> >>

Tips For Newlyweds Discuss Finances Early Make Note of Mutual Expenses


FOR WEDDING INVITATIONS Go Online to view this section!




617 W. Sheridan Ave Shenandoah, IA 51601 712.246.3097



High School Sweethearts

Find the gown they will all love.



Suggestions & Tips

Be open to ideas and expertise.



Choosing Wisely

Popular song choices.



What you need to know.

Finding the perfect gown.


PUBLISHER Kate Thompson EDITORIAL STAFF Tess Gruber Nelson - Managing Editor Kristan Gray - Staff Writer Jason Glenn - Staff Writer GRAPHICS DEPT Heidi Woods - Lead Graphic/Ad DesignerProduction Manager Sharon Cahill - Graphic/Ad Designer Tori Hopp - Graphic/Ad Designer ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVES Mark Anderson Erica Matya



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PAGE 6 GOLDSMITH gallery Weil’s

PAGE 15 PAGE 7 114 W Main St Ste B Clarinda, IA 51632 712.542.2181 EDITORIAL STAFF John VanNostrand - Publisher Kent Dinnebier - Staff Writer GRAPHICS DEPT Laurie Urich - Graphic/Ad Designer ADVERTISING REPRESENTATIVES Alec Parrott Jennifer Miller If you would like to be featured or place an ad in an upcoming issue of our Bridal Guide please contact us.

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2 - Bridal Guide

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Bridal Guide - 3



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High School

Sweethearts 4 - Bridal Guide

Managing Editor

n Nov. 2, 2013, high school sweethearts, Kayla (Roberts) and Jeremy Walter, said, “I do” in a Westboro, Mo. country church in front of friends and family. It was a long time coming for the couple, who met while in elementary school at the Fremont County Fair, where Jeremy was a third grader at Farragut schools and Kayla was a fourth grader at Sidney school. “I just remember her and her friend, Kelsey Nenneman, cleaning her hog pen out and I asked Scott Johnson who she was,” recalled Jeremy in a July 2012 interview. After that, the two would look forward to the fair each year where they showed livestock and other entries, such as photography and cherry pie baking. And each year, the two grew closer as friends. The duo even had their first slow dance together at the annual fair teen dance. “The song was, ‘When you say nothing at all,’” recalled Jeremy. “That’s when I was in seventh grade.” As the duo progressed into high school, their friendship grew even closer. It was for Kayla’s junior prom the couple went together, as friends; and then to her senior prom and his junior, and senior prom, as boyfriend and girlfriend. And although college sometimes can tear young couples apart, it only drew these two closer together. In July 2012, during the same fair where they met more than 10 years before, Jeremy proposed. After the proposal, the couple danced on the fair stage to Eric Clapton’s ‘Wonderful Tonight’ played by band performing at the fair. On top of that, the couple joked they were awarded Grand Champion Proposal by the 2012 Fremont County Fair Queen, Emily Smith. When it came to planning their wedding day, Kayla said they wanted to select a day where it wouldn’t be cold or snowy, and a day that wouldn’t interfere with harvest. “Well it wasn’t cold and snowy, but harvest was still going,” Kayla said. “It was the perfect November day. We had our reception at the Elks in Shenandoah, with delicious catering by Katy’s Catering and wonderful cake by Robin Shirley. We also had a great DJ from Complete out of Omaha. When we look back on it we tell each other it was like a blur, it went so fast.” Kayla and Jeremy both said their favorite part of the wedding was celebrating with family and friends. “We had a pretty big guest list and we knew that the place could possibly be packed, and it was. So it was great getting to celebrate with those who have meant so much to us and have been a big part of our lives,” said Jeremy. “We were very lucky and blessed to have

see WALTER, Page 6

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Making Memories

Photo Jennie Davis photography

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Bridal Guide - 5

Photos by Jennie Davis photography


Continued from page 4

all of our close family and friends able to celebrate with us,” added Kayla. As for what Kayla would change, it would have possibly been the date, since she really wanted a summer wedding, but fall was second choice. “The day was still perfect,” she added.

Jeremy, who farms, said the one thing he wish he could have changed about the wedding was that harvest was completed. Kayla, a registered nurse, said when it comes to other couples planning their wedding, to enjoy it and don’t stress out too much. “Life goes way too fast and the planning time also goes very fast. Take time to talk to each other about what you expect from your marriage,” she said. “Wedding planning is fun, but your marriage is what lasts forever.”

She added that sometimes it’s easy to get caught up on the little details in wedding planning and to get frustrated when something doesn’t go your way, but that it’s important to not lose sight of the big picture, the marriage. Kayla is the daughter of David and Kate Roberts and Ken and Jill Whitehill, all of Sidney. Jeremy is the son of Gary and Mary Kay Walter of Shenandoah. The young couple resides in rural Shenandoah.

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Bridal Guide - 7

Wedding Invitation

Suggestions & Tips


edding invitations often provide guests with a first glimpse of a wedding’s style. Invitations also may serve as the means by which distant friends and relatives find out about a couple’s pending nuptials if a formal announcement was not made. Amid the flourishes of calligraphy and impressive paper stock is information that speaks to the importance of the day when two people will be joining their lives together. Guests will learn not only the time and the place of the wedding from the invitation, but also the formality of the event and the scope of the party that will follow. Jenni Hansen, owner of the Paper Trail in Shenandoah, said she recommends brides to simply to choose what they like. “Brides shouldn’t fall into the trap of thinking they have to choose a certain style just because they ‘should’ or because other brides are,” said Hansen. “Just like the wedding day should be a reflection of who the couple is and what they enjoy, so should their invitations.” She added that in her opinion, the most beautiful invitations are those where the bride and 8 - Bridal Guide

groom have pulled the pieces together from samples they like to make their invitation truly unique. “Don’t be afraid to ask if it’s something out of the ordinary,” Hansen said. “There is more than likely a way to do it.” Popular trends that Hansen has seen lately are the use of metallic cardstock, monograms, and pocketfolds. “We recognize brides are busy people and may be traveling from a distance, so we have also been utilizing e-mail proofs for the early design process,” Hansen said. “Also trending lately is having envelopes printed with matching themes and fonts from the invitations. I think the main thing to avoid is settling for something you don’t love.” Other ideas couples should keep in mind as they begin to design their wedding invitations include: Have a good idea of your potential guest list. n Before shopping for wedding invitations, it is key to have a strong idea of just how big

the wedding will be and how many guests will be invited. This way you will know how many invitations you will need. Invitations vary in price, so cost may be a consideration if your guest list is extensive. Decide on the formality of the wedding. n Will you be hosting a black tie affair, or will it be a casual gathering at the shore? Guests infer many things about the wedding from the invitations, which should match the formality of the event in style and the sentiments expressed. An ornate invitation written with classic wording suggests a more formal affair, while a whimsical invitation with less formal wording could indicate a more laid-back event. Dare to be different by playing with invitation sizes and shapes. n Rectangular cards are standard for wedding invitations, but you can explore your creativity see INVITATIONS, Page 9

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Continued from page 8

by choosing more modern, artsy invitations. Circular invites or scalloped edges can add some whimsy to the wedding mood. Invitations that fold out or are embellished with ribbon or other decorations can be appealing. Just keep in mind that cards that are not the standard shape and size could be more costly to send. Always have the entire wedding invitation weighed and priced at the post office so you will know what the postage will cost. Choose a legible font and text color. n Your invitation may look beautiful, but it may prove ineffective if it is difficult to read. Do not risk guests misinterpreting the date or the location because they cannot read the writing on the invitation. Steer clear of pastel or yellow text colors, and remember to have a high contrast between the color of the invitation and the text you are using for easy reading. Keep the invitation simple.

n It may be tempting to load the invitation with lots

of information, but all you really need are the key pieces of information, such as the “who,” “what,” “where,” and “when.” Crowding the card will take away from its aesthetic appeal. Most stationers will suggest a separate, smaller insert in the wedding invitation for the reception information and response card. Never put information such as where you are registered or “no kids allowed.” This is material better reserved for word of mouth or on a wedding Web site. Do some math. n It is important to know your dates so you can receive the invitations on time, mail them out, and give guests enough time to respond. A good rule of thumb is to mail out the invitations at least two months before the wedding. Have an RSVP date of no more than three to four weeks before the wedding, giving ample time to the caterers and accommodating anyone who procrastinates in sending in a response. You will need the final headcount in order to confirm seating arrangements and plan for centerpieces and favors. Handwrite the envelopes. n Your invitation will look more impressive if you address them by hand, rather than printing them off of a computer. If your handwriting is not very neat, consider hiring a professional calligrapher to write out your envelopes. Make it easy for guests to respond. n Be sure to place a stamp on the response card envelope and have that envelope already addressed with your home address so that guests will have no excuses not to mail a response back promptly. Always order extra. n Mistakes happen, and you may need to send out a few extra invitations that you hadn’t originally counted. Always order extra invitations just to be on the safe side. And don’t forget you will probably want to keep one as a keepsake for yourself.

Choose a

Wedding Date Wisely! Many couples find themselves bombarded with questions the moment they become engaged, and perhaps no questions is more common than, “When is the wedding?” Although a number of couples would prefer to bask in the excitement of their engagement, some couples feel pressured to rush into picking a wedding date. Choosing a wedding date without giving it much consideration may make things more difficult down the road. Rather than jumping head first into any decisions, couples should give thought to any and all dates and decide if there are certain times of the year they want to tie the knot or avoid.


When thinking about potential wedding dates, it helps to have a place to start. Some couples find it helpful to start with a particular season and then narrow it down from there. Decide if you prefer the lush greenery of summer or the amazing color spectrum of an autumn afternoon. Perhaps you envision arriving at the ceremony with a snow-packed landscape amid twinkling holiday lights? Think about the season when you feel most happy and then determine if that time of year is doable.


Certain months may seem perfect, but not for busy professionals or those with limited vacation time at their disposal. For example, early spring may not be good for accountants tallying year-end numbers. Teachers may feel most comfortable tying the knot in the summer when they already have days off. If you run a pool business or a lawn maintenance company, then the summer might not be so good. Keep these factors in mind.

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see DATE, Page 10 Bridal Guide - 9


Continued from page 9


Some people would like to tie their wedding day to a particular holiday. Valentine’s Day is popular for weddings thanks to the romantic sentiments synonymous with the holiday, while some couples prefer Halloween or Christmas weddings. Holiday weddings can be exciting, but they also produce significant obstacles that couples who choose to get married during other times of year don’t have to worry about. Guests may not want to travel or spend time away from their families to attend a holiday wedding. Having a wedding during a holiday may mean competing for vendors and reception spaces. Prices on everything from food to flowers to airline tickets could be higher as vendors cash in on customer demand.

Day of the week

It’s less expensive for couples to get married on Fridays and Sundays than Saturday afternoons or evenings. Couples may think that the money saved will be well worth it, but they also should think about how this decision may affect their guests. A Friday wedding requires people to take off from work or school. Sunday weddings may be slightly more convenient, but those who have to get back to work on Monday may be tired from latenight festivities. Couples should anticipate some guests not making it to their weddings when those weddings are not on Saturdays.

Religious constraints

Couples having religious ceremonies should consult with their houses of worship as to which dates are acceptable. Some will not have weddings on days of religious observation. It is wise to consult with a church, synagogue or mosque before booking any other components of the wedding so that you are certain your chosen day is acceptable.

Any available dates

Your wedding date may be dictated by your caterer or wedding hall. If you have a particular venue in mind, you may be limited by their availability. This is a concession you will need to make if your heart is set on this particular location. Planning a wedding can be exciting. But the ball cannot get rolling until couples first choose the day they will tie the knot.

Newlyweds getting ready to

Merge Finances What you need to know! Newlyweds often have a lot on their plates upon returning from their honeymoons. One of the more critical issues newly married couples must address is their finances and how those finances will be combined going forward. Combining finances can be a touchy subject for many couples, especially those who had not given much thought to their finances prior to tying the knot. But there are steps couples can take to make the process of merging finances go more smoothly. Discuss finances early and often. nAllowing finances to be the elephant in the room is a mistake, as couples do not want to begin their lives together treading lightly around an issue as significant as finances. Couples should discuss their expenditures and spending habits as early as possible, as one of the biggest hurdles newly married couples must clear is coming to grips

with one another’s financial habits. If such habits have already been discussed, then developing a financial plan will be much easier once that time comes. When discussing finances, define both short-term and long-term goals and how each of you can adjust your spending habits to make those goals come true. Pay off any debts. nThe cost of weddings has skyrocketed over the last several decades, and many newlyweds find themselves in a considerable amount of debt upon returning from their honeymoons. When merging finances, couples should prioritize paying down such debt, as debt is a significant source of stress for newlyweds and longmarried couples alike. Newly married couples with little or no debt should avoid spending above their means in the months after they get married. Such spending is commonplace, as newly married couples often

want to fully furnish their new homes or reward themselves for pulling off their weddings. But new debt can be just as stressful on a marriage as debt from the wedding, so avoid this potentially problematic pitfall by paying down existing debts with your newly merged finances. Make note of mutual expenses and open a joint account to pay for those expenses. nMutual expenses like mortgage payments, food and utilities should be the responsibility of each partner, and a joint account should be established to handle such expenses. When opening a joint account, discuss how much and how often each partner will contribute money. One partner might earn considerably more money than another, so work out a reasonable agreement that details how much each partner

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Bridal Guide - 11


Tuxedo History

Continued from page 10

will contribute each month, and whether such contributions will be made on a weekly, bi-weekly or monthly basis. Make concessions for one another. nWhen merging finances, couples often discover that they don’t see eye-to-eye on how each person spends money. Couples who successfully merge their finances often note the importance of making concessions with regard to their partners’ spending on certain hobbies or luxuries. As long as those hobbies are not putting couples in debt or jeopardizing their financial goals, couples can make concessions so their partners continue to be happy and enjoy their favorite activities. Merging finances is an issue that looms for many newlyweds or couples about to tie the knot. Though it’s not always easy, merging finances early and discussing goals can ensure newlyweds get off on the right financial foot. Communication is key. Make sure you both know where you both stand financially. What debts you both have and your income. A budget is a great way to stay on top of your money. Making sure that you set aside money for savings, emergencies and retirement. Jenny Melvin Branch Manager Great Western Bank

12 - Bridal Guide

Photo by Jaco Portraits

THE GROOMSMEN... The groom and groomsmen from the Gibilisco-Hertensen wedding, which took place in October 2013 in Shenandoah.

Tuxedo Purchasing



entlemen getting ready to tie the knot will have to make certain wardrobe choices so they look their best on their big days. Although many grooms-to-be rent tuxedos on their wedding days, it may be more cost-effective to purchase a tuxedo. Tuxedos are the ultimate formal wear for men. Worn at formal gatherings like proms, weddings and lavish parties, tuxedos have undergone several style changes over the years. Men interested in looking polished will find no option makes that impression more convincingly than the right tuxedo. Men frequently called upon to attend formal events may find purchasing a tuxedo is a wise investment. There are several advantages to owning a tux rather than renting one time and again. Tuxedos typically cost around $1,000, whereas renting tuxedos can be $200 or more each time, making it advantageous for men who

frequently don tuxedos to purchase their own rather than rent. Another advantage to owning a tuxedo is the opportunity to wear a tux that is custom-made and tailored just for you. Instead of a rental that will merely be stitched temporarily to fit your measurements, a tuxedo you purchase will be tailored specifically to your body, increasing comfort and making you look better as well. Men who buy their own tuxedos also can choose the style, fabric, color, buttons, accessories, and type of lapels on the jacket. A tuxedo store may have more styles available for sale than for rent. If you desire something that fits your personality and your physique perfectly, buying your own tuxedo may be your best bet. Men worried about purchasing a tuxedo only to see their waistlines increase or decrease should keep in mind that many tuxedo shops offer free tailoring for as long as you own the tuxedo.

The origins of the modern tuxedo remains a topic for debate, but one of the more widely known tales of the tuxedo’s beginning traces this classic look to a wealthy tobacco magnate of the 19th century. Pierre Lorillard lived with his family in a residential colony called Tuxedo Park, which was roughly 40 miles northwest of New York City. The Lorillards were popular in social circles, and Pierre helped establish the area as a prime hunting and fishing destination. Lorillard also developed a social organization called the Tuxedo Club, which regularly hosted balls. At the time, men wore dinner jackets with long tails to formal events. However, Lorillard wanted something different and modern, and he commissioned a tailless black jacket to wear to the Tuxedo Club’s Autumn Ball. Lorillard got cold feet in time for the ball and did not wear the shorter jacket. However, his son, Griswold, did wear the short jacket and received much praise. Soon the style was copied and worn in various social circles across the country. The “tuxedo” was born, and soon became a timeless classic.

When purchasing a tuxedo, men should choose classic styles and colors so they can enjoy the tux for years to come. Opt for a slimfitting white shirt underneath that won’t billow out when jackets are removed. Men who want to break from tradition can opt for a shirt that is a pale blue or light gray to wear under the jacket. This is still an understated look, but one with a hint of creativity. A classic, black bow tie is an ideal match when purchasing a more classic tuxedo. The bow tie is back in a big way, and men who want to spice things up can purchase more traditional neckties for those occasions when they don’t want to wear bow ties. Tuxedos come with different lapel styles, and it’s important to know the differences. Today’s most popular style is the notch lapel, wherein a triangular indentation is cut where the lapel joins the collar. This lapel mimics the shape of a classic suit. A peak lapel is the quintessential classic, featuring a broad, V-shaped lapel that points up and out just below the collar line. A shawl lapel is a smooth, rounded edge lapel. The shawl lapel reached the height of its popularity in the 1950s, but it can still look good today.

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Photo by Jaco Portraits

THE BRIDAL PARTY... The bride and bridal party from the Gibilisco-Hertensen wedding. A little patience can help a bride-to-be select bridesmaid gowns that are flattering to all the members of her bridal party.

Find the

Flattering Color

As a bride you may have a colorscape in your mind for the wedding. But what looks good in table linens and flowers is not always the right choice for clothing. Take the skin tones and hair colors of your bridesmaids into consideration before choosing a dress. Green- and yellowhued dresses may not look nice on women with olive skin tones, while very pale colors may wash out women with fair skin. Those with dark skin may need a brighter-colored dress.


they all will love

Price Tag

Close friends and family members are an important component of a couple’s wedding day. Individuals who are especially close to the bride and groom are often asked to become members of the wedding party, which means a bride-to-be will be asking one or more women to play an integral role in the celebration. To set these ladies apart from other guests at the wedding, they are often asked to wear coordinating bridesmaid gowns. Selecting a style and color that is fitting to the unique people of the bridal party can be challenging, but it’s not impossible. As if choosing your maid of honor wasn’t tricky enough, you now must make a host of other decisions as well, all while playing stylist to the wedding party. Fashion sense is as unique as a fingerprint, and it is unlikely the bridesmaids will be able to agree on every aspect of the gowns they will be asked to wear. However, there are ways to narrow down the choices and be as accommodating as possible to their needs.

It is an honor to be asked to be part of a bridal party, but that honor can be very expensive. The bridesmaids are expected to pay for their wardrobe, hair styling, and makeup, as well as parties and gifts for the happy couple. As a courtesy to the women who already will be investing a considerable amount to be a part of your wedding, make every effort to select a gown that is affordable. There are plenty of retailers offering stylish options that may not be as expensive as some specialty stores.

Size matters

Once you’ve decided on the basic elements, consider the following suggestions to find a gown that the bridal party will enjoy.

The body shapes and sizes of the women in your bridal party will be different, and this should be kept in mind when selecting a gown style and cut. There are certain dress shapes that are universally flattering, such as A-line. Try to avoid gowns that are extremely form-fitting, as only a few of the bridesmaids may be able to pull off this look successfully. The remainder could be left feeling self-conscious and uncomfortable. Plus, form-fitting clothing will be restrictive and can be difficult to move around in -- particularly considering the gown will be worn for an entire day. 14 - Bridal Guide

Other Tips

n Take one or two bridesmaids shopping with you. Try to select ones with opposite body see GOWN, Page 19

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nce you announce your plans to get married, there’s a good chance that people close to you will be ready and willing to dispense their share of advice. Some words of wisdom will be priceless, while others you can store away for another day. When polling married couples, you will likely find they would change “this” or “that” about their weddings if given the chance to do it all over again. Here is some advice that you can choose to follow for your wedding day.

Tip #1: Trust your vendors

Couples often have unique ideas for their wedding day. It may seem tempting to spell out what you want in minute detail and insist on wedding vendors carrying out your wishes to a T. But the smarter idea may be to give vendors a little more free reign -- after all, they are the professionals. “I had a vision in my head of what I wanted my centerpieces to look like,” offers Jean M., Connecticut. “I gave the florist my suggestions and the ‘feel’ of what I was trying to create, but ultimately I left the finished product up to her. When I walked into the reception hall and saw my centerpiece baskets overflowing with fall-hued flowers, berries and twinkling candles, I was so excited I had left it up to the expert.” When deciding on particular aspects of the wedding, you can give your general ideas, but leave the finished product to the professionals. Don’t list every song you want the deejay to play or micromanage all of the poses the photographer should take. After all, experienced pros have likely done this dozens of times in the past and could produce results you never dreamed possible.

Tip #2: Scale down

Unless you are planning on auditioning for the show “Overthe-Top Weddings,” it might pay to make your wedding more about being personal and less about wowing the crowd with special effects and expensive treats. It’s easy to be lured into extra dinner courses or be persuaded to release doves at the ceremony, but will these extras impact your relationship or the life you will be building together? “If I had to do it all again, I would skip the dessert bar I had at my wedding,” says Alice C., Ohio. “The spread of pies, pastries, cookies, and chocolates certainly looked impressive, but it cost me a small fortune. Also, people filled up on the dessert bar so much, they no longer had room to taste my special-ordered wedding cake.”

Tip #3: Don’t overextend

Photo by Jaco Portraits

MR & MRS GIBILISCO... Well-intended advice could be an asset when planning a wedding.

Wedding Advice 16 - Bridal Guide

Your wedding will hopefully be a once-in-a-lifetime event. Therefore, couples often plan to spend a good deal of money to ensure their special day is perfect. Weddings are still viewed as a high-priority expense and most couples save for a long period of time despite sluggish consumer spending reports. According to the market research and analysis firm IBISWorld, nearly 60 percent of couples go over their budgets when getting married. Some do so at the risk of being in debt afterward. “It can be easy to get carried away in wedding spending,” shares Deirdre H., Michigan. “I went way over budget when getting my wedding gown and a few other components of my wedding. My husband and I struggled the first year of our marriage trying to fix our finances and battling a bad case of money-related stress.” Try to stick to a budget as much as possible so that you can enjoy yourself not only on the wedding day, but also long after the honeymoon has ended.

Tip #4: Keep it in the family

Selecting members of your wedding party can be challenging because there may be so many special people in your lives right now that you want to honor. Choosing a best man and a maid/matron of honor is a large responsibility because these see ADVICE, Page 19 The Valley News (1/29/14) | Clarinda Herald-Journal (1/30/14)

Photo by Jaco Portraits

MOTHER AND SON... William Gibilisco and his mom, Sherry Gibilisco, danced to “Simple Man” by Shinedown.

Popular songs for the

Photo by Jaco Portraits

FATHER AND DAUGHTER... Megan Gibilisco and her dad, Larry Hertensen, danced to “I Loved Her First” by Heartland.

Popular songs for the



Wedding ceremonies and receptions are rife with tradition, and many of those traditions are celebrations of the two families joining together. One of the more popular traditions is the mother-son dance during the reception when the mother of the groom gets to shine on the dance floor with her son as guests watch. Some mother-son combinations choose to go with a more traditional song for their dance, while others prefer to turn up the volume and get down to a more modern song. The following are some popular songs chosen for the mother-son dance.

Many brides anxiously await their opportunity to dance with dear old Dad at their wedding receptions. One of the more beloved wedding traditions, the father-daughter dance is an often touching moment for fathers, new brides and guests alike. Though fathers and their daughters can choose whatever song they’d like for their special dance together, the following are some of the more popular songs for this special event.


n “What a Wonderful World” -- Louis Armstrong n “In My Life” -- The Beatles n “How Sweet It Is (To Be Loved By You)” -- James Taylor n “Summer Wind” -- Frank Sinatra n “Simple Man” -- Lynyrd Skynyrd n “Forever Young” -- Rod Stewart n “The Wind Beneath My Wings” -- Bette Midler n “Child Of Mine” -- Carole King n “God Only Knows” -- The Beach Boys n “Blessed” -- Elton John n “Just The Way You Are” -- Billy Joel n “I’ll Have To Say I Love You In A Song” -- Jim Croce n “You’ve Got A Friend In Me” -- Randy Newman

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n “The Way You Look Tonight” -- Frank Sinatra n “My Girl” -- The Temptations n “Isn’t She Lovely” -- Stevie Wonder n “Wonderful Tonight” -- Eric Clapton n “Have I Told You Lately” -- Rod Stewart n “Butterfly Kisses” -- Bob Carlisle n “Over The Rainbow” -- Israel Kamakawiwo’ole n “You Are So Beautiful” -- Joe Cocker n “Unforgettable” -- Nat King Cole n “Daughters” -- John Mayer n “Father and Daughter” -- Paul Simon n “Daughter” -- Loudon Wainwright n “Landslide” -- Fleetwood Mac Bridal Guide - 17


ew wardrobe decisions are scrutinized as much as a bride-to-be’s choice of wedding gown. Finding the perfect gown that flatters the future bride’s figure while stunning her guests and soon-to-be husband is a labor of love for many brides. The Bridal Association of America estimates a bride-tobe will spend between $1,500 and $2,000 total on her gown, veil and accessories. Brides often spend months, if not years, shoping for the right gown. Finding the right gown means having an understanding of what silhouettes are available and what flatters certain body types. After all, you want to look like the best version of yourself when getting married. Here is a look of some of the common types of gown silhouettes and why choosing this shape might be right for you.


A ballgown dress is truly a classic style, evoking images of fairy tale princesses. With a fitted bodice and full skirt that flairs at the waist, this silhouette is usually good for all body types. Because the full skirt, typically poofed-up by crinoline and will hide the hips and thighs, women with a pear shape might gravitate toward this style. The ballgown style may not be ideal for petite women, as the skirt may overwhelm their figures.


Another silhouette very forgiving or appropriate for many body types is the A-line gown. A-line cut dresses should be the go-to style for anyone looking to minimize perceived flaws. The cut of the dress will fit to the waist and gradually fan out from the hips to form the outline of an uppercase “A.” When in doubt, A-line gowns are classic and sensible and a favorite among brides.


Women who prefer something a little more form-fitting may select a trumpet silhouette. This dress is fitted through the body and then the gown flares out at mid-thigh level. Women with taught stomachs and hourglass figures can benefit from this style gown, but those who do not want anything tight in the hips and thighs will want to select something else.


A bit more fitted than the trumpet, this silhouette is close to the body from the chest down to the knee. The skirt then flares out slightly by the knee. Tall, thin women generally look best in this type of gown.

Modified A-line

A balance between a traditional A-line and a more fitted gown, the modified A-line does not flare out as much. But it does flare out enough from the waist to hide areas around the hips and thighs. This is another good choice for a wide array of figures. Photo by Jaco Portraits

WEDDING DRESS... Certain gown silhouettes are universally flattering regardless of a woman’s figure. Above is Megan Gibilisco in her wedding dress.

WEDDING DRESS 18 - Bridal Guide

Tea length

Brides who do not want a gown that reaches the floor can opt for a tea length dress, on which the skirt generally falls between the ankle and the knee.


Lean brides who want simplicity in their gowns can opt for a sheath silhouette. The narrow shape of the gown from the neckline to the hem will definitely accentuate the body shape. Therefore, women who are shy may want to select a different option. Petite women who may be overwhelmed by more fabric can usually wear a sheath gown with success.

Although a bride may have a wedding gown style in mind, it is a good idea to try on a number of different silhouettes to find the one that is most flattering. Bridal salon employees are usually well-versed in matching body type to a gown and The Valley News (1/29/14) | Clarinda Herald-Journal (1/30/14) can prove invaluable when selecting a dress.


Continued from page 14

types so you can see how the gown looks on a woman who is thin and one who may be more full-figured. n Think about choosing separates. The bridesmaids can mix and match tops and bottoms to find a fit that works. This may enable a woman with a larger bust size to select a top with supportive straps while another bridesmaid can opt for strapless.


Continued from page 16

people stand out in the wedding. Although couples struggle with their choices and want to please everyone, your safest bet is to choose a family member. “I ended up choosing my best friend over my sister as maid of honor,” says Clara T., Arizona. “Although we were very close at the time, we’ve since grown apart due to work relocation. My sister and I, however, talk and hang out frequently. I regret not having

Many stores have increased their inventory of separates because of their growing popularity. n Choose one color and then let the bridesmaids choose the style they like the best for themselves. The look will still be cohesive, but it won’t be boring with one type of gown. Also, each bridesmaid will be comfortable with a gown that flatters her shape. n Go with a tea-length gown. These gowns have become quite trendy and are

less formal and cumbersome than fulllength gowns. Plus, there is a greater likelihood that the gown can be used again at a later date. n Purchase the bridesmaid gowns at the same store where you will be purchasing your wedding gown. Most shops will offer a courtesy discount if the bridesmaid gowns are purchased at the same store. Ensuring bridesmaids are happy in their gowns takes a little work but will be well worth the effort.

asked my sister to be my maid of honor, considering hers is a friendship I know will last a long time.” Unless you don’t have close family members or your relationship with your siblings or cousins is strained, choose a family member to serve as best man or maid of honor. It is easy to be overwhelmed when planning a wedding, and couples can expect to be bombarded with advice. However, it could pay to heed the advice of couples who have already lived and learned from their wedding choices.




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20 - Bridal Guide

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Bridal Guide 2014